Western History & Genealogy Blog

Western History Collection

Found in the Archives: 19th-Century Recipe Notebook

Harriet Scott Camp's recipe notebook, believed to date from 1850s through the 1880s. WH1453
Recipe for cholera remedy that calls for one tincture of opium. WH1453
Recipe for crullers that uses "1 coffee cup of sour milk or cream." WH1453

Cookies, Cakes, Sickness, and Sorrow

Several months ago, I wrote about Mira C.


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I've used the online Assessor Books to locate my house - now what?

Cabinets holding microfilm of deed book volumes
Drawers with labels indicating the range of book microfilms in that drawer.
Film boxes with volume numbers on them
Cabinet with microfiche indexes for locating page number
One of the microfiche cards with indexes for locating page numbers
Microfilm viewer/printer

I've used the online Assessor Books to locate my house - now what? Head to the clerk and recorder office on the 1st floor of the Wellington Webb building.

Once you have obtained the book number from the Assessor books online from the digital collections part of the DPL's Western History/Genealogy Collection you want to see the actual deed for the det

Denver’s Albany Hotel (1885-1976)

Exterior of the Albany Hotel by William Henry Jackson, undated. WHJ-10343.
Albany Hotel menu cover showing the exterior of the hotel after Burnham Hoyt's renovations, 1946. WH1590
New Year's Day menu at the Albany Hotel, 1891. WH1590

A Denver Hotel Built On A Croquet Field, Demolished For An Office Building

In 1882, architect E. P.

The Hermanos Penitentes of Southern Colorado and Northern New Mexico

Procession of Hermanos Penitentes, Z-6120
Hermanos Penitentes, AUR-2196
Whips of the Hermanos Penitentes, 6118

Newspapers once called the Penitente community “a ‘secret’ and ‘strange mountain cult’ enacted by ‘swart hot-eyed Mexicans and half-breeds’ that needed to be exposed” (

In the Archives: Documentation of a 1929 Groundbreaking—Soil and All

Denver City and County Building
Envelope containing soil from the groundbreaking event
Mayor Benjamin Stapleton dumps a shovelful of dirt during the groundbreaking cer

Think archives only collect papers, photos, and films? Think again!

One collection found in DPL’s Western History and Genealogy Department has the dirt on Denver’s past.

Happy New Years!

Kings and Queens Social Club

New Years is a time for reflection. 

What are the events of the past year, of your life? Is now a time for New Years Resolutions?

I promise to lose weight

I promise to be a better co-worker

When JFK Visited Colorado

Frying Pan / Arkansas Rivers irrigation project - Pueblo, Colo
Denver Post. August 18, 1962. Page 1. "Pueblo Celebration: Kennedy Visit Caps Struggle For Pan-Ark"
Rocky Mountain News. November 23, 1963. Page 16. "JFK's Colorado Trips Drew Huge Crowds."
"Colorado's Tribute to John Fitzgerald Kennedy." Kennedy Memorial Library.

As we commemorate the fiftieth anniversary of John F. Kennedy’s assassination, some commentators have mentioned his lack of concern for the American West and the issues important to Westerners.

The Department Store Experience, 1917

Interior view of the Daniels and Fisher store, circa 1902. X-22884
Daniels & Fisher building, 1911. By Louis Charles McClure. MCC-1564
Displays of dinnerware, silver, crystal, flowers, and lamps at Daniels & Fisher store, circa 1902. X-22888
Daniels & Fisher French Room, March 1903. X-22800
Page from Jessie Thompson's autograph book, 1881. WH1870

Does the stress of holiday shopping make you long for a stroll through an early 20th-century department store?

Teenager Elizabeth Thompson wrote about her visit to Denver’s legendary Daniels & Fisher Department Store in an English class composition dated March 12, 1917.